Complete WEBAIM survey 7

Every year (or every other year) Webaim puts out a survey for screen reader users to complete. This helps people in the field of web design create more accessible websites. That way we can all have a more accessible web. ๐Ÿ™‚

Whether you’re a full-time screen reader user or you just use it for testing purposes you can take this survey. The survey says it could take anywhere from 10 to 15 minutes to complete. The survey has about 30 questions. It is open until November 1st. The results will be released in late 2017 and will be reported as aggregated summaries. To learn more about this survey or to take it as I am about to do; head on over to the following website: Complete the survey here and follow the directions on the page.
Thanks for reading!

And you thought finding a print version of a textbook was hard

We’ve all been there. We’ve all had to buy/rent print textbooks for college. What if the college bookstore doesn’t have any? Now what? Most people would go online to look for college textbooks. If they couldn’t find what they were looking for by title, and author they’d probably use the ISBN number. (that number with all the dashes on… I think it’s the back of the book) Instead of the title/author/edition number. I know because I’ve done this. There’s nothing like practicing what you preach.

I know I complained on twitter that finding a certain print edition of a certain book is difficult. Don’t get me wrong, it is. The good news is that I finally found the book I was looking for, and am now waiting on my order to get here.

I’m getting slightly sidetracked. When I sat down to write this wasn’t the focus of this article. Instead I want to focus on how hard it is to obtain an accessible version of a textbook. EG. .txt, .pdf ETC. Note: I’m writing this as if it’s happening right now, but here’s what I went through in a nutshell.

I did the “type in the author/title/book edition thing, and I couldn’t find it. So, I typed in variations of those things, and I still couldn’t find the correct edition. I can find individual chapters, which is grate, but not the whole book. I even tried typing in the ISBN number.

Today I’m going to try typing in the publisher. Usually if you do this the publisher’s website will show up in the search results. The keyword here is “usually” because nothing happened. I can’t find the publisher anywhere. Which is ashamed because I really wanted to request that textbook in an accessible format. Why is this so complicated? *imagines pulling out own hair. Doesn’t feel any better.*

Okay so, what if I have the cousin look. No luck there either. As she got the same results as me. I can buy a P. D. F. for from $67 up to $100, but with most of these offers I have to buy the print version first. Plus I’m not really sure how much money I have to spend. So, I’m just going to say none.

Okay, back to the drawing board. Amazon? Nope!Bard? (long shot, but worth a try. At this point I was getting desperate.) Still nothing, though I didn’t actually think there would be. How about Bookshare? Okay, this is weird. Every time I search for the author/title/edition, nothing. I’m not sure why, but my gut says they have the 9th edition. Too bad because my syllabus says that I need the 8th. ๐Ÿ™

*fills out a book request form, sends.* *waits until the next day* *gets an email back asking if I can use the 9th edition* *responds with “Not sure. The one I requested is the one in my syllabus, so I would assume not”* The response says that it’ll take awhile to format it and stuff. No big deal. I know that. I can wait. I have the print version, so someone can read it to me. I’d prefer to read it for myself, but it’ll do for now. *emails instructor about using the 9th edition, recieves no response.*

Now, here’s the thing I’m not proud of. I ranted on twitter about being asked if I could use the 9th version. I’ll get into an explanation of that in another blog. I also realized after the fact that I should have went further with the coke and Pepsi thing, and say that it’s like being asked after you already said “Coke.” When asked what you would like to drink, but I didn’t. Long story short I felt bad about writing that, and I apologized. I’m sure you can find said rant on twitter if you really want to read it.

Long story short they are now going to add the 8th edition, but it’s going to take about six weeks. I’m glad they’re doing that, but it sucks that I have to wait so long.

This all took place within the period of three days. I should probably point that out. I didn’t start looking for it before hand because I thought it would be easy to find. Plus I hate downloading syllabuses a few days before class starts. Because if the professor/instructor changes anything, then you have to go re-download the syllabus again. Lesson learned don’t assume that finding a book in any accessible format, or any format for that matter is going to be easy. If you can start looking before your class actually starts, and you can feel yourself slipping slowly behind. Because you don’t have the textbook you thought would be so easy to find. I know I’ve definitely learned this lesson. P. S. I still can’t find the publisher’s website, and the office of disability services can’t find them, or a P. D. F that isn’t going to cost them an arm or a leg.

Thanks for reading!

Applying to college? My experience

I recently applied to complete my b/s in special education. I guess I didn’t realize how the admissions process works. So, I’m blogging about it for anyone who may be curious.

When I applied for my a/a in general education I had no clue about the applications process. I wasn’t exactly enthused about this college because it was actually the second one that I applied to. That being said, I don’t remember anything about the process.

My first worry about this application wa,s was it accessible? The answer, surprizingly was yes. All six pages of it. Which I completed.

Then, comes the waiting part. Was I excepted? I couldn’t wait to find out. What felt like forever had passed before I got the letter. However it was only a few days. I was excepted. *dances*

When my mom opened it she tried to tell me that I wasn’t excepted. Then, she said “April Fools!” I said: “This isn’t the time for jokes, and this isn’t April.” She thought that was funny.

Then came sending in my college transcript. I tried several times, but couldn’t get it to work. Finally today I figured out that the college was trying to charge me a fee. Note to all future college students. When requesting a college transcript keep plenty of money in the bank for this reason. Thank goodness I had the money. ๐Ÿ™‚

Then, I had to switch my financial aid over. That turned out to be more accessible than I thought it was. All this time of having the previous college’s financial aid office help me. *sigh* Anyway, I got it all done, and I’m proud to say that I’m now a college student.

I’m still so excited to be a college student, and I can’t wait to continue my journey. If you’re a new college student see this link. I wish I’d had something around when I first started college. ๐Ÿ™‚

Sending an email to a developer: What to say?

Hello! I realize that this is Thursday, and is suppose to be travel day. However, in light of Global accessibility day I thought I would change it up a bit. No wories. I do have a travel story for you, and it’s going up next.

Have you ever wanted to email a developer of an app to tell them that their app isn’t accessible? Where do you start? Do you know? How about applevis You just fill in the stuff you need to fill in, and send the email. The stuff being things like: the parts of the app that isn’t accessible, how the developers can make them accessible (I think that’s included in the template), and, whatever else you can think of that’s not included in the template. Be sure to include exact details, so that they can replicate the problem you’re having with the app. Then, press send

That’s it. That’s all you have to do. Enjoy sending emails to developers. Remember, Always try to be helpful, and always give some positive feedback as well. Even if you don’t use this template.

Thanks for reading!

A Wonderful Website For You

HAPPY NATIONAL COFFEE DAY!
In addition to this joyous celebration of the miracle beverage that is coffee, you all get to come along with the Yanagram on a journey to a happy corner of the internet I discovered a couple days ago. Are you ready? I hope so, because this place is pretty awesome. In fact, Steph herself couldn’t wait til I introduced you all to it…that is, unless you’re already acquainted with it, in which case, you can just sit back and relive the magic and wonder of first unearthing this little gem.
So what, you ask, is this thing so robed in wonder and crowned with joy? Why, Blind Tech Support, of course! This wonderful place exists right here http://www.blindtechsupport.net and is waiting for you to visit it. According to their About Us page:
The Blind Tech Support team are a group of dedicated individuals with a good knowledge of access technology and a range of accessible hardware, software and applications which we our selves use on a daily bases.
Our goal is to offer support, training, ideas and information to the blind community on the various forms of technology that are out there and accessible to us.
From the most basic question to the most complex, our aim is to try to find you an answer. You might want to know a key stroke or you might want a complete solution for the work place, we at BTS should and will be willing to help.

I’ve only had the chance to absorb just a little bit of the information posted on this site, but that little taste has strongly compelled me to devour a whole lot more. The site contains links to their Team Talk Server — and if you aren’t aware, Team Talk is a multi-person voice and text chat client that works on different servers, comprised of various channels, created by the many users. In addition to this, BTS also has message boards, where you can post to threads about anything, I’d imagine; create your own threads; and interact with the different people involved in the BTS world.
Those tools are wonderful for interacting, connecting, and transmitting information, but what else does BTS offer? Not to worry, curious reader, the answer is simple, beautiful, and just plane awesome.
Podcasts.
A growing list of informative and detailed podcasts about all the techy goodness that is availible to and appropriated by the blind community. Now, there are other sites, such as Blind Cool Tech and the Blind Geek Zone that also provide a number of great podcasts, but the thing I personally enjoy about the ones I’ve listened to so far on BTS is their specificity. The other sites have a whole host of contributers, topics, categories, and what have you, but BTS is a group of people targetting less general topics.
And those topics include:
Android
iPhone/iPod
iOS/Android comparison (which I haven’t listened to yet, but should be very informative)
iTunes
Screen Readers
Audio Production
Apple Mac
Windows

The team is adding information to this site regularly, and the most recent update is (as of today) just two days ago. I am really interested to see how this community develops, and I hope you are, too. The BTS team seems to, as well, because they also offer links to their Facebook and Twitter, so go like or follow them if you are so inclined, and support the BTS team. ๐Ÿ™‚ And, just so you know, the information provided in this post was found directly on the BTS website.
Anyway, folks, that’s all I have to share for now. I plan on doing some follow-ups to a few of Steph’s posts I found interesting, and also a few more of my own in due time. Meanwhile, I hope you’ve enjoyed this post, and will enjoy BTS with me. ๐Ÿ™‚
(: Yanagram ๐Ÿ™‚

PS: I know it isn’t tech day, but I couldn’t help but post this. Sowwy, Steph! I’ll make up for it somehow ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Our twitter

    • Archived post: Podcast 1 - Introduction https://t.co/PIHeD4QPzg
      about 2 hours ago
    • I promise there will be new podcasts and blogs soon even if i have to do it all myself. Just gotta repost the old pโ€ฆ https://t.co/cs9FccmsU7
      about 4 hours ago
    • RT @get2workorg: @LivingBlindBlog We are working hard to help blind business people. Can you please retweet? #kickstarter #GivingTuesdayโ€ฆ
      about 5 hours ago
    • Archived post: MorphVox Pro https://t.co/YOJBUrIswI
      about 10 hours ago
    • Archived post: A desire renewed https://t.co/kCKFDIVzGb
      about 18 hours ago
    • Archived post: So. Many. Assignments. https://t.co/NgQPtNwIwv
      about 1 day ago
    • Archived post: Reader inclusion: Changing our tagline https://t.co/UXLOPfn1SL
      about 1 day ago
    • If you live in the United States, happy Thanksgiving from all of us at lbb. <3 - Stephie2010
      about 1 day ago
    • Archived post: Just,Ugh. https://t.co/9aNbYxElBr
      about 2 days ago
    • Archived post: The Amazon Echo https://t.co/2YyBEcZyik
      about 2 days ago